The Blues and Ivory Coast legend headed a last minute header to equalise against Bayern on the famous UCL final night. Didier Drogba has shown how he believed Juan Mata is the key in winning Chelsea the Champions League in 2012, weeks ahead of the Spaniard helped his dramatic late equaliser in the closing.
Enduring a challenging league period where director Andre Villas-Boas was sacked in March, Chelsea triumphed against all odds, beating Bayern Munich on penalties in the closing.
On the eighth anniversary of the Blues’ finest nighttime, Drogba told the story of the success in that Twitter thread.
He wrote: “two decades ago, the supervisor was sacked by the team and now we, the gamers had a group meeting at which we recognised as being partially responsible for his [Villas-Boas’] death. The captain John Terry talked, Frank Lampard, Petr Cech, and other leaders from the team also.
“We chose to give this rivalry, despite our defeat Napoli [3-1 from the quarter-finals]. We’d been pursuing this decoration for eight decades and could not do better than runner-up. Everybody agreed to put egos aside and challenge each other for the exact same aim.
“Then meeting, I requested a young 23-year-old Juan Mata,’Please maestro, allow me to win the Champions League’.
“He looked in my like”Man, you are mad, you are Didier Drogba, you’re going to assist me. Then I told him I have been here for eight decades without needing it, therefore that I think you are the person who’s going to help us triumph. I will also give you a gift if we acquire it, which was the end of February.
“Three weeks later, we had been in Munich, at the closing, in their own arena, submerged using a red tide. The hosts took the lead with eight minutes to go and in my way to kick off the ball for the last eight minutes I was discouraged.”
“The young man explained, ‘Believe Didi, you need to think’. Nearly in tears, I replied after taking a look at the moment,’Believe in what? It is nearly over’. I am gonna shout like a couple of months back when I dropped the [Africa Cup of Nations] closing with Cote d’Ivoire.
“Last minute, last nook, I mean corner for all of us for Bayern Munich. Guess who chose that corner kick… Juan Mata. The rest is now history.
Drogba completed the thread with an image of this commemorative ring that he gifted to all his team-mates following the closing.
Regrettably, not all the Chelsea group enjoyed their post-match parties. Goalkeeper Petr Cech disclosed he had missed the party as he needed to take the mandatory random doping test. It shows how big was Cech on that night. Cech was unbeatable.